In the Oltremare Delta you will find the Coccinella House: a large village entirely dedicated to ladybugs, a stone's throw from the Oltremare lake.
Ladybugs are precious allies of the Oltremare staff to tell how, in the midst of gardens and vegetable gardens, pesticides can also be avoided. These insects are in fact excellent natural herbicides. Oltremare supports organic agriculture and undertakes, through the awareness of the little ones, to organize events to promote concrete alternatives to the use of pesticides in nature.
Ladybugs are ... lions!
As adults and young, ladybugs feed on aphids and scale insects, pests and mites. They are so voracious that the famous entomologist Giorgio Celli even called them 'garden lions '. Giorgio Celli himself was one of the first promoters of the use of these insects as a biological alternative to the use of pesticides in agriculture.
It has in fact been calculated that an adult of the most common species, Coccinella septempunctata (because it has seven dots on its back), can eat up to 100 aphids a day, at the larval stage 150! For this reason they are among the most important predators used in biological control: the first large-scale experiment in this sense, think about it, was carried out in California in 1888, and successfully, to eradicate the terrible citrus cochineal ( Iceryaparmisi ), saving Californian citrus growing.
Area closed until April 2023